Home for Christmas

Home for Christmas

By Rev. Dr. Justin Rossow

“I’ll be home for Christmas, you can count on me…” I’ve had that song playing in my head for a month now. I remember rehearsing that tune with a big band in Germany during an exchange year; I’d make fake sobbing sounds from the trumpet section every time we got to the refrain. I was joking, but it was also sad to sing, an ocean away, “I’ll be home for Christmas, if only in my dreams …”

My mom tells a story about picking up my dad from the airport. They were engaged to be married, and he had been away far too long. When he got to the airport parking lot, she rushed into his arms. His first words were, “Welcome home.” Mom remembers those words, because that’s what it felt like: he had been traveling, but in his arms, she was finally home.

Ever since our first parents left the Garden of Eden, we have carried with us a sad and quiet longing for home. The distance was too great for us to find our way back to God; being home, really Home for Christmas, was possible only in our dreams.

So God did something about it. God bridged the divide from heaven’s side. God refused to stand remotely by and watch our suffering at a distance. That’s the meaning of Emmanuel: Jesus is “God with us.” God! With us! Finally!! Jesus shows up, takes you in his arms, and says, “Welcome Home.”

Reprinted from the Next Step Community blog by Rev. Dr. Justin Rossow and his book You, Follow Me A Daily Travel Log for Advent/Christmas 2019.

Find the original blog and more here

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